The Baltimore Ravens will begin defense of their Super Bowl XLVII title on the road instead of having the customary Thursday night contest at home to start the season.
The NFL announced Friday that because Major League Baseball wouldn't move the start time of the Baltimore Orioles' home game against the Chicago White Sox from a 7:05 p.m. (et) scheduled first pitch, the Ravens would have to play on the road.
The Ravens and Orioles play at stadiums next to each other and share parking lots, so the NFL decided to make the move to avoid traffic issues in the area.
"While we are disappointed for the fans in Baltimore, we appreciate the efforts of the Ravens, Orioles and Major League Baseball and understand the logistical problems in trying to schedule the teams on the same day," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said in a statement. "The Ravens will open the season on the road on Thursday night, September 5, in our annual NFL Kickoff Game on NBC. We are exploring potential fan activities in Baltimore around the Kickoff Game, including a pre-game concert."
The Orioles will start a new four-game series on Sept. 5, the night after completing a three-game set in Cleveland.